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Showing posts from December, 2010

The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent...a review

There are times when I realize just how incredibly lucky I really am, and at this moment it is in direct correlation to the time that I currently live. Obviously there are downfalls that those living have faced in every single time period in history, and our world today is no different. However, I have shelter, I am able to eat when hungry, and I have a job that enables me to provide for Leah and I (she really likes her dog biscuits), and most importantly, I am not outright condemned for my beliefs.


Heretic's Daughter details the life of Sarah Carrier Chapman, who is not as lucky. As a young girl Sarah's mother, as well as other members of her family, is accused of witchery during the height of the Salem witch trials.  I couldn't help but compare the description of the trials to that of the hearings held by Joseph McCarthy and the House Committee on Un-American Activities during the late 1940's. These trials basically forced innocent people to prove their innocence by s…

Freedom by Jonathan Franzen a review…

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Poor, poor Patty and Walter. The main characters of Freedom spend the majority of their time living exactly the way I’ve avoided living. However, similar to reality shows like Teen Mom and Sister Wives, there is something within the sadness of Freedom, of living a life so unlike my own, that pulls me in so completely it were as if I didn’t have a choice. 
Freedom is an unusual read, both in style and story. Reminiscent of Pulp Fiction, the plot isn’t presented in a nice and neat series of events. Instead, connections are forced. Questioning and predicting about what is to come is ideal, and especially nice for a book club read. Speaking of which, this was our third choice following Three Cups of Tea and The Lacuna. I really enjoy that I have someone else choosing books besides me, because I probably would have never selected this one. Many of our discussions focused on the idea that no major conflict was occurring, yet, we were continually pulled back into Patty and Walter’s lives itc…

It must be hard to be so perfect

This Friday, I am expected to attend a meeting to discuss why a student in my writing class is no longer the “A” student they were before I began grading their child’s work. This is the third such meeting and/or phone conference I have had with various parents since starting my new position almost two months ago. Last week, I received the following letter.
After reviewing __________’s progress reports for the past few weeks, I am curious as to how a straight “A” honor roll student is suddenly going downhill and receiving “C”s.____________ is not a “C” student. Therefore, I would like to schedule a meeting with you so we can all get on the same page.
These are the moments that make me regret my desire and ultimately my decision to teach writing. Why, oh why, have I voluntarily chosen to teach a subject that demands resistance to simple “formulas” for success in order to be successful? Why have I chosen to spend hours upon hours of my free-unpaid-time grading essays and other assorted w…